The Worst Christmas Of My Life - a Christmas to remember for all the
Sarah Alexander plays Mel
Sarah Alexander plays Howard's loyal wife Mel.
She laughs: "I suppose you could say that Howard and Mel are the world's unluckiest couple.
"They are forced to spend Christmas with her parents Dick and Angela, but with Howard's Christmas party getting him into a very sticky situation, it doesn't start well – and it doesn't get any better!
"Worst Christmas leaps into action at a furious pace with Howard lurching from one disaster to another, with poor old Mel staggering along in his catastrophic wake.
"God knows how those two manage to stay together. They must have great sex!"
She thinks there is a lot in the series that people seem to relate to: "I think we all love to watch something we know is going to go catastrophically wrong - the old banana skin syndrome which is particular to the British sense of humour.
"The Worst Week - or Christmas in this case - never lets you off the hook, it is relentless in its catalogue of disasters.
"But I do think everyone has a soft spot for Howard and at the end of the day you really feel for him and almost certainly forgive him.
"Well, at least my character does - but I'm not sure I would forgive him if he were my husband. In fact, come to think of it, I wouldn't - I'd kill him!"
It was certainly a challenge trying to film a snowy Christmas scene in sunny June: "One of the funniest and saddest moments was when we all stood there watching a sudden tropical downpour - we were filming in summer of course - wash all our beautiful fake snow away.
"We were all outside the church which should have made a wonderful Christmas card scene... but for that bloody rain."
Sarah adds: "I really adore working with Ben. We've been friends for a long time, and with that comes a short hand in communication that is very useful when filming comedy.
"I first met and worked with Ben when we were shooting a commercial together in Blackpool for disposable cameras, which was very funny – we then kept in touch and have worked together a lot since.
"The best time has to be when he asked me to be involved in Armstrong and Miller for Channel 4. I reckon that was my best job ever.
"I can't forget the Nude Practice sketch we did in a hurry; we were vets, wearing nothing except boots, a cap and gloves – in November, in the Peak District – very weird!
"Ben is utterly hilarious, bonkers of course, and a constant source of inspiration to me."
Sarah will soon be seen in I Could Never Be Your Woman, directed by Amy Heckerling, playing a lead character – Jeannie - alongside Michelle Pfeiffer
and Paul Rudd.
Early next year she will also star in Stardust, directed by Matthew Vaughn, where she plays Empusa, a 400-year-old witch. She joins Michelle Pfeiffer,
Robert De Niro, Claire Danes and newcomer Charlie Cox in this fantasy feature.
Sarah is best known for her input - both writing and appearances - in British comedy greats Worst Week Of My Life (BBC) and Green Wing (Channel 4).
She also starred in four series of Coupling (BBC) and in Smack The Pony (BBC).
Other notable appearances include: sketches in Drop The Dead Donkey (BBC), Armstrong And Miller (Channel 4), The Eleven O'Clock Show (Channel 4) and Smith And Jones (BBC).
Her film credits include: the tv film Perfect Strangers (CBS/Sky movies), Going Off Big Time (dir. John Ddoyle), The New Adventures Of Pinocchio (dir. Michael Anderson), Juliet in Romeo And Juliet (dir. Michael Bogdanoy), Princess and Seaview Knights.
In addition to film and television, Sarah has appeared in several theatre productions including: The Vagina Monologues (New Ambassadors Theatre), Hand In Hand (Hampstead Theatre), The Secretary Bird (Far East tour), Northanger Abbey (Queens Hornchurch) and Lady Macbeth in Macbeth (Gateway, Chester Theatre).